SISL > 2012 Sustainability in Math Workshop > Activities > Control Chart Project

Control Chart Project

This page was authored by Owen Byer, Eastern Mennonite University.
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This is a short assignment that asks students to find some data related to sustainability and determine whether the mean of that data set is statistically stable, and whether the process being measured is in control or out of control. It is often used for quality control in a production process, but in this activity, it is used to see if an ecosystem process is stable and healthy or disrupted (out of control.)

Learning Goals

Statistics Learning Goals:

  1. Be able to construct an x-bar control chart for data from a time series.
  2. Be able to determine when the mean of a process is not statistically stable.
  3. Recognize that a similar process can be used to determine whether variation is not statistically stable.

Sustainability Learning Goals:

  1. Be able to find data relating to environmental sustainability.
  2. Understand whether certain parts of the environment are degrading and at risk.

Context for Use

This assignment can be utilized in statistics courses and in any course where students are learning about the environment. Students will utilize means and standard deviations (normal distributions) in constructing a chart that shows whether the process is in control (called a control chart).

Description and Teaching Materials

Control Chart Assignment (Microsoft Word 2007 (.docx) 15kB Jan22 13)

The attached file is the assignment. The examples and HW questions refer to the text "Elementary Statistics using Excel", 4th edition, by Mario Triola.

Teaching Notes and Tips


References and Resources

Elementary Statistics using Excel, 4th edition, Mario Triola.